Since coming together, the Wee Agency consortium has worked with a number of high-profile clients and won national awards. Each member business has also seen an increase in trade.
The Wee Agency combines the talents of PR, IT and design firms in Edinburgh, Inverness and Aberdeen to create an integrated marketing company that operates across Scotland.
Prior to forming the consortium, design firm 2bcreative had regularly collaborated on an informal basis with IT firm Alchemy+ (now owned by Aberdeen-based company Dynamic Edge). They realised they could win even more contracts by branching out further, so they established a working relationship with PR firm Muckle Media. Forming The Wee Agency let members combine skills and operate under a single brand. It also opened the door to a host of potential new clients, as well as providing the opportunity to bid for more ambitious projects.
The start of something big
Consortium working is a fantastic route to find new markets. The Wee Agency has brought us more customers, more innovation, more money – in fact more of everything.
John Young, director of The Wee Agency
It was while working together on a project that the businesses became aware of Co-operative Development Scotland’s (CDS) Collaboration Prize. Recognising the benefits of operating under a single brand, they decided to apply. A specialist adviser from CDS guided them through the process of formalising their relationship. As an eventual winner of the Collaboration Prize, the consortium received £10,000 in consultancy and support. Among other things, this helped to fund a white-paper on digital marketing and establish a graduate position, which brought a focused resource to the consortium.
Strength in numbers (even wee ones)
Combining members’ expertise and contacts has helped The Wee Agency win several high-profile contracts across the country. They now work with clients that none of the three member companies would have been able to reach as individual businesses. The consortium can count Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Energy North and the Edinburgh Culture Summit among a growing client base. Its work could also be seen during the Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup.
In 2014 they won the SCDI Award for Excellence in Business and Engagement for their innovative approach to digital marketing.
Benefits for the businesses
The Wee Agency consortium has helped all three member businesses directly and indirectly. Better-than-anticipated through-put saw each company receive a significant windfall from their collaboration. Sharing contacts and joint networking opportunities has helped each business generate new leads and work from different sectors.
Find out more about setting up a consortium co-operative